Early 20th Century Chinese Military Martial Arts

Discussion on the three big Chinese internals, Yiquan, Bajiquan, Piguazhang and other similar styles.

Re: Early 20th Century Chinese Military Martial Arts

Postby willie on Sun Sep 17, 2017 12:42 pm

This is a quite interesting and inspiring thread.
I have some questions as well.
I have built a pretty casual relationship with the owners of a very nice Chinese restaurant.
Before the owner came over to the states, He worked as a shore-man in the shipping lanes.
He and his friends would practice martial arts while on the docks.
He says that nearly no one in China believes in taiji as a fighting art. It's looked at as only an exercise.
He was taught taekwondo for fighting...The reason being is that taekwondo could be used immediately.
He also said that, "very little, if not none" of the internal martial arts were practiced in the military.
So although I've found this thread inspiring, I have to question the validity.
Last edited by willie on Sun Sep 17, 2017 12:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
willie

 

Re: Early 20th Century Chinese Military Martial Arts

Postby Trick on Mon Sep 18, 2017 10:59 pm

willie wrote:This is a quite interesting and inspiring thread.
I have some questions as well.
I have built a pretty casual relationship with the owners of a very nice Chinese restaurant.
Before the owner came over to the states, He worked as a shore-man in the shipping lanes.
He and his friends would practice martial arts while on the docks.
He says that nearly no one in China believes in taiji as a fighting art. It's looked at as only an exercise.
He was taught taekwondo for fighting...The reason being is that taekwondo could be used immediately.
He also said that, "very little, if not none" of the internal martial arts were practiced in the military.
So although I've found this thread inspiring, I have to question the validity.

My XYQ teacher in China has studied that BGZ since childhood, he said he could continue his martial arts studies when he was in the army and there he was also introduced to 'western' boxing and sanda, he is 63yrs young now so it seem that during his army days there was some TCMA available in the Chinese army. Yes today in China it is TKD for kids and ThaiBoxing/Sanda/MMA that interest the young who want to learn hand to hand combat. Tongbeiquan is a TCMA (manly in north China)that quickly teach power generation and foster the fighter mindset , many old timers in Dalian "underworld" have skills in this CMA.
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Re: Early 20th Century Chinese Military Martial Arts

Postby willie on Tue Sep 19, 2017 2:09 pm

Trick wrote:My XYQ teacher in China has studied that BGZ since childhood, he said he could continue his martial arts studies when he was in the army and there he was also introduced to 'western' boxing and sanda, he is 63yrs young now so it seem that during his army days there was some TCMA available in the Chinese army. Yes today in China it is TKD for kids and ThaiBoxing/Sanda/MMA that interest the young who want to learn hand to hand combat. Tongbeiquan is a TCMA (manly in north China)that quickly teach power generation and foster the fighter mindset , many old timers in Dalian "underworld" have skills in this CMA.


Yes, He said that he was also taught western boxing. I'm sure that there are military men who enjoy internal arts, But I don't think that they
are part of the military system. I could very well be wrong, But that is what he said.
willie

 

Re: Early 20th Century Chinese Military Martial Arts

Postby yeniseri on Wed Sep 20, 2017 5:43 am

Taiwan has done a great job in dismantling CMA to form a police/military practical CQB in the restraint domain
There is even a changquan type (don't recall the name) routine fist to capture elements of cheena (say cheese, nah)
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Re: Early 20th Century Chinese Military Martial Arts

Postby Wuyizidi on Mon Feb 26, 2018 10:25 pm

meversbergii wrote:... which in turn lead me to "Yin Yuzhang's Baguazhang".

I've only begun to peruse the latter recently. Kennedy's book implied that this Baguazhang's sabre section (which if memory serves he described as being for the miaodao, when it clearly depicts a dadao) was written towards the Chinese Army in some capacity, which is why I bought a copy. In addition to Rovere's work, I also have experience with Jin En-Zhong's "Practical Big Sabre Techniques", translated a few years back into English by Jack Chen. All this leaves me with a few questions that someone here might know the answer to.

1) Is Yin Yuzhang's sabre teachings - the dadao teachings - actually written towards the army? I know several units deployed this weapon during the Second Sino-Japanese War, and it would not surprise me if Jin En-Zong wasn't the only author targeting them.

2) What about his Bagua section? I'd expect that if Section B is written towards the army, so would Section A be, but it could be two different books compiled together.
...
M.


Yin Yuzhang wrote 2 books: one on Buguazhang 八卦掌簡編, the other on broadsword 砍刀术练习法. If you see them together in one book, most likely someone just compiled them together.

The broadsword skill he wrote about is not Bagua skill or Miao Dao skill. According to the book itself (https://tieba.baidu.com/p/3821299219): the weapon 砍刀 Kan Dao is the same weapon popularly used in Qing Dynasty infantry. It's on the heavier side (in western units - 35.5 inches in total length, 3.5 pounds) with long handle (8.5 in). Yin compiled what he thought was the most easy to teach, easy to learn, easy to practice, and easy to use techniques. As for the skill, because of the weapon it's designed for, it's mostly 2 handed skills. Like spear, there are one handed applications, as when you're trying to reach an opponent far away.

"Whether it will achieve widespread use in the military, I do not yet know", but he had hoped that the martial spirit will spread amongst the general population, that this 2 set routine will achieve popularity amongst the average citizen. It was his hope this will strengthen the body (notice the incredibly low stance) and spirit. The book itself is an official publication of the school Yin taught at - Qingdao Guoshu Guan. In the book he states that he realized we are in the age of air war now, but after the January 28th Incident (1932), even the Japanese military saw the value of broadsword in close quarter combat, and was attempting at the time to assemble Chinese Dao experts in Dalian and import this skill to the Japanese military. "Whether this scheme is successful we don't know", but Yin and others at the school obviously felt an urgency in arming the Chinese side with same skill. Hence the publication of this book in June of 1933.

It was a hugely popular and influential book upon publication. The book covers 2 sets, 40 skills. In my lineage there were some Tongbei masters who trained some of the army units of the north. According to them they never taught more than 10 skills to the troops, and in reality 90% of time they used just 1 skill in combat (big down-to-up sweeping block from left turned into immediately up-to-down chop from right). As Yin Yuzhang himself states, none of the skills he compiled here is novel, they were all time-proven techniques. So if we find some army units using skills covered in his book, it's not so much his as they are the most common, useful technique of big heavy dao itself.
Last edited by Wuyizidi on Mon Feb 26, 2018 10:31 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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